16 February 2017

playing some b-ball outside of the school

This is the first week this year that Calvin hasn't had a basketball game to go to on Saturday. I really liked the games. I liked watching Calvin play and run around. He scored two baskets during his last game. He really liked it too. He would play hard defense sometimes, and sometimes look around like nothing too pressing was going on. He would do the tipoff because he was the tallest. Now what an accomplishment is that? He brought Gossner milks last time because it was our turn for drinks. Now, I don't want to be a crazy shuttle mom, taking kids to and fro from sports all my life, but dang it it is fun to watch them play sports.

14 February 2017

valentime 2017

 We didn't get a chance to get groceries today because of two girls napping. We had scrambled eggs and smoothies instead of actual food and we all enjoyed it. Nate came in just in the nick of time, but too late for photos.  

Calvin made hearts out of cardstock for his class valentines, writing "From Calvin" and sticking lollypops on them to hand out to his classmates, and when he got home from school I was glad to see that he was not the only home-made valentiner in class. There were lots of fun ones, and he ate about sixty pieces of candy before dinner. Maybe that's why he was happy with just a few bites of eggs. I, on the other hand, am still hungry (I ate one piece of his candy, but I also just ran 5 miles on the treadmill), so I'll go eat a pink-frosted sugar cookie now.

13 February 2017


This old track and one little boy hid in an upstairs bedroom and enjoyed vintage amusement for a couple of hours during the Super Bowl. He found out which cars worked best and vroomed them all about.

09 February 2017

hiking and not hiking

 We did some hiking things and some non-hiking things on our trip, but mostly the planned events were hiking. Because I was in charge. On the temple quarry hike, above, I wondered how babies nap on vacations where there is no hiking. I have no clue.

One big event for Calvin was going to the Black Bear Diner. Nevermind that it has expanded to a couple locations on the way to St. George; to Calvin going to St. George means going to the BBD. Note to us, for like the 5th time: We adults only need to get one meal and split it for heavens sake.

 And the hotel pool. We swam twice in two days, so I'd say it was worth choosing the Comfort Inn over a pioneer-era stone home that was my second choice (but no indoor pool). 

The other activity I found was a museum: Brigham Young's winter house. No need to mention that I wish I had a winter house down south, but it would hardly have been a vacation back when he lived there. Although that couch would do just as nicely in either era, I do say.

08 February 2017

rock climbing

 Rock climbing, climbing rocks, same diff. When we went on our winter excursion to The South last week, we spent a couple of hours in town at what is called Pioneer Park, or Dixie Rock. Later, across town, Nate pointed out a tall mesa with the word "Dixie" on it and said,"That's the rock we were atop!" And I said, "Really? I didn't realize it had writing on it." And only now, as I type this, I am putting it all together. Doh. 
 There was the customary standoff between a boy who wants all the things and the parents who say you can't bring those in the car, along with the compromise settlement of a photograph of the beloved items. There is one of his rocks too.
This is atop Dixie Rock. Which has the word "Dixie" written on its face. Obviously.

02 February 2017

one more thing about norah

Norah has been on my mind a lot lately, and there is one thing I keep meaning to record: NORAH'S SCHOOL.
We thought it was cute and totally normal when Norah started talking about stuff she learned at HER school after Calvin started kindergarten. She would say she learned how to play ring around the rosie or she would sing a made-up song and say she learned it at her school, and it was funny. But more recently her school has been off the charts, teaching-wise. The other day she came up with the name Desiree, which is much different from her usual made-up-sounding names like Kaybee or Cheechee. I said, "Where did you learn the name Desiree? Was it in a show?" And she said, "No. I learned it at school." And I really did try to figure it out. Like, was church her school? No. Was it from a show? NO! It was from her school. There have been a couple of other instances where her school has taught her things I didn't know about in the past week or two, which makes me wonder just when she is attending this magic school of hers. And if she gets there from platform 9 3/4?

01 February 2017

short stack

This stack of clothing contains 3 pairs of pants and 5 shirts. 

These are the clothes that a certain 3-year-old will no longer wear. The remaining 1 pair of pants in her wardrobe is rainbow striped and "not bumpy" like these pants are. I actually really really get being uncomfortable in pants so I took said 3-year-old to Old Navy last night and let her try on all the pants. I mean all the pants. She was really excited, and loved it. It was fun. But too bad all the pants were also "bumpy." 

We left empty handed. 

Luckily January is over and she will wear 3 pairs of her tights, so if she will continue to wear them, and if she'll wear all five of her dresses, and if they can hold up for the next 2.5 months of twice-weekly wear, and IF I remember to put the rainbow pants in every load of laundry I do, she will survive. (That is a lot of "if"s--we may be in trouble.)

26 January 2017

empty threats

In my ongoing pursuit to rid the world of sibling fights, I said today, "If you fight one more time, I'll just move your bed into Norah's room while you're at school and if you have to share a room maybe you'll get along."

Well. The response to that was a) confusion on Norah's part, with her thinking I was just going to trade their beds (which she was opposed to), and b) "I'll do ANYTHING to not share a room with her!" on Calvin's part. Also, "I'll just take my toys and leave and never stop traveling so you won't be able to find me!" and "I'll just go into my room and sleep there even without a bed." and, from Norah, "Who will be in the green room? What will happen to it?" So I just let that one drop, gave Calvin a cookie and sent him on the bus. But what are we going to do about them?

the drifts of '16-'17 are high

I'm sort of worried the snow will rise and rise until it's even with our roof, and then we'll be living in an igloo. It just keeps on snowing (she says, as if she's never lived through a winter before). 

All that bragging about not getting sick has really caught up with me this year. I was miserable with breastfeeding maladies last month and now I have a cold. A cold, I know, is nothing to write home about, except that it has knocked me out pretty hard this week and I'm writing about it. I see the outside from inside most of the time these days, and I'm telling you, the snow is creeping up to the windowpanes.

22 January 2017

a little cute

9-month skills:
Crawling fast (she looks like a robot)
Pulling herself up to stand, and letting go, and gingerly lowering herself down to the ground
Climbing stairs
Responding to Maggie, Magpie, and Magnolia
Knows what the "more" and "all done" signs mean (not that she does them back though)
Laughing at her siblings
Sleeping through the night, usually (7pm  - 6ish am)
Eating many foods (she doesn't like purees; she wants to gum things down)
Having the sharpest fingernails in existence
Dancing when she hears music
WAVING! (Especially to Nate)
Eating things off the floor
Weighing almost 15 pounds

crawling down stairs

21 January 2017

knowledge is power

One thing I like about Calvin is that no knowledge is purely academic for him. Everything he learns, he puts to work in his life.

The day the primary learned the Geneology song, he pointed out an old photograph, asking if the woman was someone's progenitor.

He saw a sign on the bedroom door at a friend's house during a birthday party, so of course the practical application of that was for him to make a two-sided "Do Not Disturv" and "Kum in" sign for his own door after a fight with Norah. (He was undaunted when I pointed out to him that Norah can't read, and I applaud that too.)

18 January 2017

squares know that you're cute

One thing I really like about Norah is the utter and complete nonsense she utters. Sometimes the words sound like she is just picking them out of a hat. This was her response to this picture:

"But Melissa is...good...at...cute...That's me. Are we outside or inside? I gotta write inside of basketball. So that's me inside the basketball. Cuz that's me. That he prints that I'm cute. And I'm Norah and I got my own letter that Norah's so cute. So cuuuute. And mom, what are you doing? What are you doing? Maaaaaags! Maggie. Maggie! Come to sister!"

So...not absolute nonsense all the time, but pretty close.

26 December 2016


 Calvin and Norah were such good little kiddles waiting on Christmas morning for the A-OK to come upstairs. They had to wait for Nate to snowblower the driveway because we had a wonderful Christmas Snow. It was powdery and everything looks wonderful now.
They were also good kiddles and were very excited about their presents and said thank you and played with the toys for hours afterward. Maggie even had the decency to sleep through the gift-opening. Then we had church at 9:00 and it was a really nice mostly-music sacrament meeting. 
This is the picture I took on Christmas Eve morning when I was a big sissy and turned around on a trail run with some hardcore runners. It was slick and steep and I was just like, "Sorry ladies, gotta go!" and turned around and ran allllll the way down. Ha. 

22 December 2016

milk drunk

I just almost posted a really long post about the trials of breastfeeding Magnolia but I got bored proofreading it. It would have been written like this: 
The Trials of Breastfeeding Magnolia

But anyway, she was supposed to be getting milk drunk and falling asleep a few minutes ago, and she didn't (as usual). So I turned on some twinkle lights in the kitchen, made myself some hot chocolate, and prepared to make pumpkin bread instead. Let me just summarize the deleted post: breastfeeding this baby has been a trial. (Have you ever heard of milk blisters?) 

Now here she is cozily asleep on her auntie Carly at Calvin's Christmas concert last week. Because not only is breastfeeding going the way of the buffalo, but napping is becoming a TRIAL as well. (Except when Carly holds her.)

21 December 2016

the little house in the big woods effect

We read The Little House in the Big Woods early this winter, and it was so very fitting for the season. I don't think it is Calvin's favorite book we've read this year (no whizzpopping or anything) but we did both like it--the descriptions of slaughtering a pig and patting a bear on the nose and driving to cousins' house for Christmas in a sleigh. Very cozy and wintry: even though half of it takes place in the warm months it just seems like a winter book. Not only that, but once we started reading it, it popped up everywhere. In lists to read out loud to kids, Christmas gift ideas and even the new Gilmore Girls! Nate calls that The Little House in the Big Woods Effect. 

Similarly cocooning ourselves inside this December like the Wilder family, we have hardly gone outside at all. Who am I. It has been colder than usual this December--really cold. Also...BABY. So even though I am sad to admit it, we haven't used the stroller once in December. Just typing that makes me want to go for a walk. Anyway, here are some things we've been doing instead:

Watching Calvin's kindergarten Christmas program, which was amazing. Kindergarteners are the best singers and they don't care who knows it. They also like to do actions and hummmm on kazoos.
 This year in addition to getting her Master's and her regular teaching stuff, Trudy had foot surgery and decided not to make six million gingerbread houses. We were like, GOOD, please go rest so your foot can heal...but we wanted a gingerbread house so Carly and I took the responsibility together and made a couple. I (as I knew I would) was pretty bad at making the gingerbread, but they actually turned out, and it was fun. 
 The other morning I had to take Andy to an appointment at 8:15, but Calvin wasn't awake when we had to leave so Nate took him to work with him. When we went to go pick him up, they were eating breakfast from the cafeteria and hanging out in the conference room. We've visited Nate at work dozens of times, but this time was just a little different and more fun. The kids watched the cheese slicers from above and Nate pointed out some of the more notorious employees to me. It was exactly a year ago that Nate applied for his job and we both thought--MEH, it probably won't work out and it probably isn't that great of a job anyway. Weren't we the wrongest. He was so miserable last December. His new job has been such a blessing, such a huge answer to our prayers and fasting (his, not mine--I haven't fasted for so long, thank you pregnancy and breastfeeding), and such a relief. 

14 December 2016


I have been avoiding Walmart for years. Years and years. But for some reason, Target still hasn't gotten the memo to open a store here, and so from time to time I venture in and hope I leave without swearing. (It is just a stressful place.) Well believe it or not but I took all three children there last month, didn't swear, and bought the perfect blue snowpants for Calvin. He awesomely can dress himself in snowclothes now, and he does. It's been snowing a bit this week and he outfits himself and goes and and shovels snow. I just want to know how to bottle that. 
 I haven't joined him for much frolicking because I'm almost always feeding a baby, but the other day I wasn't, so we went out. Maggie liked it, or at least didn't hate it. 
Also regarding Walmart: I have ordered my Christmas cards there (online) for three or four years now, and they are always perfectly fine. I'm not saying they're the quality of all these "presses" that spam me with coupons in November, but they are fast and look fine. And even after a 40% off coupon they are still half the price of the so-called presses that spam me with coupons. So there's that.